Gas masks and wind chimes

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The Montreal winter is now in full force. The high today was about -15 (not including the windchill) and it’s going to get real cold tonight and stay that way for the rest of the week.

I didn’t look for any trash yesterday because I didn’t feel like braving the cold. I also had a project to do – fix a laptop I found in the trash to use in day-to-day life. I found the laptop on the curb a couple of months ago (though it never put it to the blog). It’s a clean-looking Acer Extensa 5430, which is a reasonably modern machine. It was in a case and had a sticky note saying “No HD” (hard drive) on it. I brought it home, plugged it in and it seemed to work fine, outside of the lack of a hard drive of course. Yesterday I bought a new hard drive (about 68 bucks with tax), installed it, and then got an operating system going.

After trying Windows Vista (the original license is still on the bottom of the laptop) and getting frustrated with the fact that it didn’t seem to want to connect to the internet I decided to try out Ubuntu, the free open-source operating system. So far so good. I must say that I quite like Ubuntu.

Regardless, all this to say that I’m now typing on a laptop, which is kind of nice. It’s a bit quirky – it acts weird when you close the screen sometimes and I’ve had a hard time getting the wireless to work – but overall I’m happy with how it turned out. Definitely worth spending a day figuring it all out.

Today I decided to face the cold and look for some trash. Once I got out I didn’t find it too bad. I guess I’m getting used to it. I ended up walking for close to two hours! Having a beard helps a lot though.

I found the little pile of trash above came pretty early in my walk.

nato canada gas masks?

Inside one of the bags I found these gas masks. I’m not sure if they were ever used – the filter looks pretty white and the masks are otherwise very clean. I decided to look on Ebay to see if there’s a market for used gas masks. I found a few similar looking ones that sold for 20-30$.

More interestingly though I found out these masks were probably used by the Canadian military in recent missions (even if these specific masks may have never been issued to personnel). The closest looking one is this one, mostly because it has the same “Made in Canada” white label. I think the ad is mislabeled – it looks way to modern to be from WW2. This one also looks pretty similar, but doesn’t give a specific time frame as to when it would have been used.

I’d like to know more. Let me know if you have any information about these masks!

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Also in the bags were two sports medals: one for the 1992 Quebec Games and one for a 2002 Women’s Hockey Tournament.

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There were some clear recycling bags placed on the front porch next to the trash. I guessed that they were waiting for recycling day, which is tomorrow. I figured that I might as well take a quick look to see if there was anything interesting. I didn’t see much – typical house recycling mostly – and was about to move on when this caught my eye.

It’s a necklace. The necklace part is a thick rubber band, which is sort of odd. The pendant (and the parts that bound it to the rubber) is sterling silver and looks to me like a map of South America, though I admit that the design could be somewhat of a rorschach test. Something else to consider etsy-ing at least!

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wooden wind chime

I found this (bamboo?) wind-chime in the farthest right box of the picture above. At first I thought it was all messed up (but fixable) but now I’m wondering if I just don’t understand how it’s all supposed to go together. It makes a pleasant, airy clonking noise.

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A bunch of construction materials out on the curb in front of Parc Lafontaine.

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Nighttime now. I went by this second-hand store on Gilford that often puts out lots of good stuff on trash days. You could run a pretty successful yard sale with the stuff they throw out. This time a massive stuffed horse lays on top of a bin and awaits its fate.

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It was too dark to see much. I did find this puzzle with a funny picture which has some definite kitcsch value. Apparently Patof was the main character in a popular Canadian kids show back in the 1970s.

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Here’s some food I dumpster-dived from the trash bins behind the Metro on Laurier. I found some good buns, a bag of apples, and some carrots and cauliflower. Not too shabby, even if the photo is really unappetizing.

That’s all for now!

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9 thoughts on “Gas masks and wind chimes

  1. Dillon Hall says:

    I’ll buy or barter for the gas masks. Contact me.

  2. The wind chimes are fairly common here is North Queensland, Australia. They are made locally at The Atherton Tablelands but probably also sold in Asian countries where bamboo grows well. It loos to be all there and okay. The strings often rots from the sun but can be replaced. That small cyclinder bit hangs down inside the chimes and the rectangular piece above it catches the wind. They do sound lovely. It would come up beautiful with a scrub in a mild bleach solution and rub with oil.

  3. I had a great weekend of trash picking as well. We picked up a chaise lounge, a plant shelf and a large mirror. I will try to blog about these soon. We also hung wine crates that I found on the curb as well for shelving in the kitchen. It looks so nice that I keep going back in to look at it. I blogged about it here https://capeofdreams.wordpress.com/2013/01/21/no-whining-over-these-crates/

    Happy Picking!

  4. Bamboo wind chimes make a wonderful, gentle sound. That set should clean up nicely.

    You’ve got some good eats from that Metro haul.

  5. Claire C says:

    The jigsaw puzzle made me cringe and laugh at the same time… Weird find!

  6. Max Robert says:

    I love reading about your finds,especially stuff like sport medals,old books and knickknacks.I came back from Switzerland after a 6-month student exchange program and I am shocked by how much good stuff North Americans,including Montrealers,throw out.In Switzerland,you rarely,rarely see people throwing out reusable furniture for garbage pickup,much less antiques and knick-knacks.Switzerland is a wealthy country too.I urge more people to take up dumpster diving part-time;some of my rich relatives hate dumpster diving,others do it themselves.I regularly discuss dumpster diving with others.

  7. Heather says:

    I’d love to see a picture of you! I wonder who you are! What do you do for a living? What kind of basket do you have on your bike to carry stuff? I just wonder!

  8. rick says:

    poor stuffed horse did you save it

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